Ancient Monuments

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Pen y Clawdd Castle Mound

A Scheduled Monument in Crucorney (Crucornau Fawr), Monmouthshire (Sir Fynwy)

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Latitude: 51.8753 / 51°52'31"N

Longitude: -3.0039 / 3°0'13"W

OS Eastings: 330988

OS Northings: 220112

OS Grid: SO309201

Mapcode National: GBR F6.S1HK

Mapcode Global: VH790.W4B7

Entry Name: Pen y Clawdd Castle Mound

Scheduled Date: 12 December 1950

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 2386

Cadw Legacy ID: MM145

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Motte

Period: Medieval

County: Monmouthshire (Sir Fynwy)

Community: Crucorney (Crucornau Fawr)

Traditional County: Monmouthshire


The monument comprises the remains of a ditched motte, dating to the medieval period (c. 1066 -1540 AD). It comprises a circular steep-sided mound some 30m in diameter at its base and rising up to 3m to a level summit measuring 22m across. A 4m wide partly wet ditch surrounds the motte but has been built over on the S and E sides towards the fine 16th century farmhouse of Pen-y-clawdd Court, which almost certainly overlies the site of any bailey or associated structures. Beyond the ditch is a substantial steep-sided bank some 3m high and with a 4m wide flat summit. This is surrounded by its own 4m wide external ditch with a further 2m high counterscarp bank. A limited excavation carried out on the mound revealed walls on its summit. The double ditched form of the earthwork is very unusual and is likely to be the result of the adaptation of a small motte into a formal garden feature to serve the adjacent Court, the broad flat-topped external bank forming a short promenade and the structure seen in excavations potentially a summerhouse rather than a medieval building. It resembles in plan the larger but roughly contemporary moated lodge of the Dukes of Beaufort in Chepstow Park Wood (MM103).

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of medieval defensive and domestic monuments and early post medieval garden features. It is a particularly clear example of the adaptation of a medieval castle site into a formal garden, the juxtaposition of gentry house and motte illustrating the continuity of many early minor castle sites as high status residence of local importance. The monument is well-preserved and an important relic of the medieval landscape, sharing group value with a series of small undocumented mottes along the Monnow Valley. It retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of the presence of both structural evidence and intact associated deposits.

The scheduled area comprises the remains described and areas around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.

Source: Cadw

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